How does this kit thing work?
You order your kit and when it arrives at your front door you assemble the kit, generally the DIY Dog House Kit consist of seven panels that you can assemble easily with basic tools and very little skill.
You will need an area where you can locate the doghouse that is protected from the elements as much as possible, as an example if you reside in an extreme cold climate it would be wise to locate the dog house in a protected area from the wind.
If you reside in an extreme hot climate it would be ideal to locate it under a shade tree or a patio area so the direct sunlight is not heating it up during the day.
If money is no object then a composite dog house is ideal, however if you have limited funds to spend on a home then the ideal shelter would be a cedar dog house, preferably western red cedar.
It is beautiful wood – The natural beauty of western red cedar features crisp, rich grain and is the preferred wood by many woodworking professionals for all types of designs. Because of the natural oils in the wood it is also resistant to insects and premature rotting.
It plays well with others – Western red cedar is resin and pitch free, meaning it will stain very well and it is readily available in all sizes and shapes.
It is an Eco-Friendly wood– Unlike some other building products like brick, concrete or other synthetic materials cedar will not generate greenhouse gasses and it is a renewable (if sourced from sustainable managed forests), biodegradable product.
By using real cedar for this doghouse it actually reduces the amount of Co2 (Greenhouse gas) in the atmosphere. During the growing stages, young cedar trees absorb and hold Co2. This Co2 is maintained even through cutting and manufacturing.
Allowing the trees to grow though out their lifespan and become old, as they begin to age and break down, that previously absorbed Co2 begins to release back out into the air.
What makes western red cedar unique is the tannin oils that throughout the wood, meaning it doesn’t require the high maintenance like other cedars such as the cheaper white or yellow cedar wood.
All wood requires some type of care but the western red will stand up to the elements much longer, a simple application once a year with a wood sealer will ensure your doghouse will last a long time.
Okay I want a new dog house but what size do I need? There are several obvious considerations when selecting the right size house for your dog.
You will need to consider the height of your dog for the door opening; they need to clear the door when they enter, however it is wise to have the entry as small as possible to help retain heat in the winter or to keep the house cooler in the summer.
So if the entry is approximately three fourths of the length (shoulder to ground) of your dog they can enter comfortably. However this is a guideline you know your dog better than anyone.
If your dog is elderly “ducking” (as most dogs do while entering a door) may be difficult and should be taken into consideration.
The next consideration is the width and the length for your dog, again breeds vary as does each dog. Your dog needs to be able to enter the dog house and turn around. Is your dog (gasp) overweight? If so that needs to be taken into consideration.
A guideline that can be used is not having the house more than 25% bigger than your dog. So if your dog is 20 inches in length (nose to flank not including tail) then you may consider a house 25 inches in length & 25 inches in width or a little larger. Again this is a guideline.
If you are in a warm climate year round having the house a bit larger is not a problem. On the other hand an over sized house in a harsh winter climate is going to be hard to retain heat.
If you can’t decide, or if you think your dog is in-between sizes it is wise to go to the next size larger, look at it this way if you were buying a mattress would you want your feet hanging over the end?
Next consideration is the height of the dog house.
The 25% guideline applies here as well so if your dog stands 20 inches from head to toes your house should be approximately 25 inches tall or a little larger.
It is not a problem if the height is more than 25% as long as it does not exceed 50% of your dog’s height.
So there you have some guidelines, if you are still confused watch your dog and the next time they are stretched out on the floor take note of the space they need to be comfortable get a tape measure and measure that area.